India resumed their 2023 World Cup preparations high on confidence against the world no. 1 side New Zealand in Hyderabad in the first of the three-ODI series on Wednesday, January 18. India’s young sensation Shubman Gill smashed a double hundred in the first innings. The knock generated a fair amount of traction, not just because it was an incredible knock laced with power-hitting but also because it came in the lead-up to a home World Cup for India.
But the turn of the year saw Gill launch himself back into the side and regain the team management’s trust, and to the extent that he was picked as an opener for the ODIs against Sri Lanka. The selection call saw Kishan dropped in the match after his double hundred.
Gill’s 208 off 149 balls against New Zealand in Hyderabad made him the youngest batter to score an ODI double hundred in senior men’s cricket, a record that had hitherto been with Kishan albeit for less than 40 days. It was his second consecutive hundred too.
Fingers crossed for him: Sanjay Manjrekar on Gill
Former India cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar opened up about his first impression of World cup winning captain MS Dhoni. The former Indian cricketer and full-time commentator also made a huge claim about opener Gill in his tweet. “When I saw Dhoni the first time that he mostly hit straight sixes told me that he will be consistent when it comes to big hitting. Gill has the same gift. Fingers crossed for him,” Manjrekar said in a tweet.
When I saw Dhoni the first time that he mostly hit straight sixes told me that he will be consistent when it comes to big hitting. Gill has the same gift. Fingers crossed for him. 🤞
— Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) January 18, 2023
One of the features of Gill’s innings was his six-hitting, an aspect of his game that has often held him back in the shortest format. But on this occasion, he was at his fluent best and hit nine sixes in total, with three of them coming off successive balls to deliver him the double ton.
It was a one-man show and the BlackCaps didn’t really have many answers to him. Even the usually economical Mitchell Santner couldn’t put a lid on the scoring rate. The youngster played a destructive knock which included 19 fours and 9 sixes.